CENTRAL TRAINING AREA, OKINAWA, Japan (Aug. 4, 2006) -- Fifty-two Marines with Combat Assault Battalion, 3rd Marine Division, participated in military operations on urbanized terrain training July 26-27 at Central Training Area's Combat Town.

The training consisted of instruction on MOUT tactics, followed by live-fire combat scenarios with SESAMS, or special-effect small arms marking system rounds. The rounds, fired out of a special receiver for M-16 rifles and the M-4 carbine, leave a bright, washable liquid on the impact area to display where a target was hit.

The intent of the training was to expose the Marines to close quarters combat techniques used in urban environments. The Marines practiced room-clearing and emphasized team communication, according to Gunnery Sgt. Chad E. Love, the CAB communications chief.

"We do continuous (individual augmentations) and deployments," Love said. "(The fighting) is not in the jungles, it's not on some battlefield. It's happening in towns."

Instructors from the III Marine Expeditionary Force's Special Operations Training Group went through the basics with the CAB Marines on the first day of training. The Marines then went through assaults in which a squad acted as hostile forces defending a building while another squad assaulted the structure.

The Marines were critiqued heavily during the first run-throughs, whereas the second day of training placed more emphasis on the squad and fire-team leaders, said Warrant Officer Jay B. Durham, the communications maintenance officer of CAB.

"We tried to get the small-unit leaders involved more, get the corporals making decisions," Durham said. "In the heat of the battle, any decision is better than no decision at all. Hesitating is the worst thing a leader can do."

The fact that the SESAMS rounds left visible impacts improved the realism of this training usually conducted with blanks, according to Lance Cpl. Jeffrey J. Cyprus, a nuclear, biological and chemical defense specialist with Headquarters and Service Company, CAB.

"They're (simulation) rounds, so you can see if you got hit or not," Cyprus said. "It's not a 'he said, she said' kind of thing."